Six key risks a CIO must avoid

Challenges are everywhere for a CIO, , , around every corner, creeping up from behind you, , , even right in front of you. These challenges create risk for you and your company, , , risks that can cause tremendous loss of productivity, wasted resources, and frustration.

There are literally dozens of bullets and arrows flying at a CIO every day.

In my travels in managing IT organizations for more than 20 years, I’ve found there are 6 key risks a CIO needs to learn how to avoid. In this article, I’ll identify them for you, and I’ll follow-up with a short post on each risk with insight on how to prevent it in your organization.

The 6 key risks a CIO must avoid include:

  1. IT – Business disconnect – Many studies suggest the over 50% of IT organizations are out of sync with their company’s needs and issues. When this occurs, the company loses significantly in wasted expense and lost productivity. This issue is a key concern of CIO’s and CEO’s alike in surveys every year.
  2. Project failure – Delivering what you say you will do, when you say it will be delivered and within the cost you say it will cost is paramount, , , it is how you achieve credibility. Several studies find each year that the failure rate in IT projects is quite high causing loss of productivity and money in company after company around the world.
  3. Losing people – Losing key staff can cause significant challenges for an IT organization. CIO’s need to be able to keep their best people in order to make progress.
  4. Missing your budget – When the IT department fails to achieve its budget for the year, the CEO and CFO must make it somewhere else. CIO’s need to be very astute about budgeting so they can achieve their financial plan and earn trust from the other executives of the company.
  5. Downtime – Nothing will get a CIO fired faster than an environment with lots of systems or network downtime. Developing a stable infrastructure is key.
  6. Security – Technology plays an important role in creating a secure environment for people in the company and for the hardware and software environment created to support the business.

Read more about each risk and tips to prevent them in the posts that follow.

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